Rising UFC star Khamzat Chimaev is not one to mince his words.
Recently, he’s taken aim at the UFC matchmaking process, particularly regarding title fight rematches. Chimaev’s dissatisfaction has been voiced loud and clear, and his criticisms underline a desire for a refreshing shakeup in the way that the UFC schedules title fights — especially after a champion is defeated.
“I’m a big fan of UFC but the last year or so we see like only the same thing,” Chimaev said in a video uploaded to his YouTube channel.
“Pereira and Izzy two times, Usman and Leon two times. Who wants to see that shit? Nobody.”
“I want to see something fun to see. You know, the fans want to see like a crazy show, crazy fights. People want to see “Borz,” you know.”
Standing firm in his convictions, Chimaev believes that he’s the biggest draw of any non-champion fighter in the UFC today.
“I’m the biggest name without the belt, so, when you fight with me it’s more money, more fans,” Chimaev said.
His belief in his ability to pull crowds and generate revenue is unflinching, even claiming that global celebrities, like Cristiano Ronaldo, have been messaging him and asking when he will compete again.
Chimaev also questioned the UFC’s decision to schedule Colby Covington in the next welterweight title fight against Leon Edwards. He suggests a possible national bias in play, with the UFC favoring American fighters for title opportunities.
Expressing his concern, Chimaev explains, “Leon has the title. He said he wants to fight and these things, you know, but I don’t know what UFC wants to do. They give Colby that chance [against Leon].”
“When he win his last fight? I don’t remember who he did win against. Nobody. He’s a nobody, he wins against nobody. [Kamaru] Usman broke his chin two times, knockdowns, that guy is shit. And they gave that chance for him, maybe because he’s from USA. It’s more they want the belt for him.
“I’m from Sweden, I live in Dubai, so maybe they don’t want to give that belt to me.”
However, despite his open criticisms and concerns, Chimaev still holds onto his faith in the UFC’s plans for him. He accepts that the organization may have its reasons and long-term strategies, stating, “Maybe they have good plans for me. I trust that guys, so we’ll see.”
And right now, it looks like the plan for Khamzat Chimaev’s next fight is a showdown with former welterweight champion Kamaru Usman in Abu Dhabi at UFC 294 later this year.